Nate Silver on Race Massachusetts Race: 25% isn't 0%

Ben Cohen
Publish date:
Social count:

Nate Silver urges some perspective on the Massachusetts vote:

People are acting, however, as though 25 percent is the same as zero
percent. And -- as disappointing as it might be to be in this position
-- obviously it is not. This is not some basketball game where the
score suddenly became Brown 75, Coakley 25; a 25 percent chance of
winning means, quite literally, 25 percent.

the 86 elections that we made calls on the morning of November 4th,
2008, only 6 (the Senate election in Minnesota, and the Presidential
elections in Florida, Indiana, Missouri, North Carolina and North
Dakota) featured contests in which the trailing candidate had a 25
percent or better chance of prevailing. The outcome of this election
remains more uncertain than that of at least 90 percent of other
elections, even if it's less uncertain than it was 24 hours ago.